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Mini and Toy Aussie Shepherds

PetFriendly
July 29th, 2006, 05:22 PM
Are there any Aussie shepherd aficionados out there? I'm just wondering how well bred a 'mini' Aussie would be, or is it just a gimmick to charge more for a pup sort of like a 'teacup chihuahua'?

LavenderRott
July 29th, 2006, 05:40 PM
It is a gimmick.

Australian Shepherds are not that big - about 45-50 pounds. A well bred one is a joy to own. My brother had one while we were growing up and he was the best.

They are herding dogs though, so they are energetic and are very happy with a job to do.

mona_b
July 29th, 2006, 06:02 PM
Actually,it's not a gimmick.

They are very well bred by responsible breeders.They are health/genetic tested.They do compete in shows,agility/flyball.They are actually about 14" and 25lbs...Quite a difference with the standard one.

My partners brother and sister-in-law have 2 beautiful males.They also help with the cattle and sheep on their farm.

kaytris
July 29th, 2006, 08:15 PM
Sticky issue. The original, working style aussie was much different than the big fluffy show aussies you see now, and much closer to the so-called mini aussies. You can still find a working line aussie that weighs under 30 lbs.

Aussie from the 1950's:

http://www.workingaussiesource.com/images/diary%20images/fiftiesaussieforweb.jpg

What the Australian Shepherd Club of America says:

Those who oppose the promotion of Miniatures feel that breeding a smaller size is unnecessary when a smaller dog can be found among the general population. They are concerned that the act of breeding selectively for size comes at the possible expense of health and structure. The final concern is that by breeding smaller dogs, the Mini breeders are targeting urban pet owners who have little space (small yards, apartment dwellers) and misrepresenting the true nature of a herding dog.

The Australian Shepherd Club of America (ASCA) has taken the position that they do not wish to recognize distinct variations in sizes because there is already an accomodation for that in their breed standard. ASCA will not allow the registration of any dog who is also registered under another breed name or size variation. Naturally, there is the occasional unethical breeder who attempts to ride both sides of the fence by intermingling modern Australian Shepherd lines with Miniature Australian Shepherd bloodlines. This behavior only adds fuel to the arguement that there is no need for a size variations under a different name and those breeders who are caught registering their dogs with both ASCA and a Mini registry are subject to having their registry rights suspended if caught.



My opinion.. the Mini aussie people can't have their cake and eat it too.. they should start establishing their own, unique breed.

The toy aussie is a scam, however, and as soon as you start breeding for dwarfism you add a whole slew of health issues and you no longer have anything resembling a herding dog.


Here's another very informative post: http://tinyurl.com/qwbhn

PetFriendly
July 30th, 2006, 08:13 PM
Sticky issue.

My opinion.. the Mini aussie people can't have their cake and eat it too.. they should start establishing their own, unique breed.

The toy aussie is a scam, however, and as soon as you start breeding for dwarfism you add a whole slew of health issues and you no longer have anything resembling a herding dog.


That's kind of what I was thinking, the smaller they are, the most expensive they are, yet do don't really do anything special. I guess a seperate breed would be the way to go, sort of like the various sizes of poodles?! Standard poodles can be service dogs... I can't see a toy poodle being much help to anyone, except maybe a hearing dog for the deaf.

So if they were able to breed the poodle down in size, will they be able to do the same with the aussie, you figure?! You think they might be able to breed some of the energy out of it too?

PetFriendly
July 30th, 2006, 08:15 PM
Actually,it's not a gimmick.

They are very well bred by responsible breeders.They are health/genetic tested.They do compete in shows,agility/flyball.They are actually about 14" and 25lbs...Quite a difference with the standard one.


About the size of an american cocker spaniel?! That's the size of the one I saw that prompted the question. And no, it wasn't a pup, I asked the owner who proclaimed it was a 'rare' mini aussie. The dog was quite cute, looked just like the standard aussies, just way smaller.

Lili
May 7th, 2008, 12:36 PM
I know this is an old thread, but I did a search on "Mini Aussies" and this one came up.

Just thought I'd add my 2-cent as I’m considering the "Mini" Aussie (among others) for my next dog.

I do understand the Mini Aussie is not a recognized breed in any way, and I do not wish to support the "Designer Breeds" craze that is going on right now...

That is why I'm doing lots of research beforehand. I don't want to end up with a sick dog or a dog that has an uneven temperament due to dubious breeding methods. I did learn of one Mini that is fearful of other dogs and humans - to a point - but from what I know, this is not common across all Mini lines.

Here's an excerpt of a text from a Mini breeder, which I think showcases that this person is going at it the right way (although this passage does not serve as a guarantee, as anything can be written on the web. What processes and ethic are actually used is another story.)

*********************

"My main focus is the Miniature Australian Shepherd ranging in size from 14 to 18 inches at the withers. In order to keep the correct structure in my dogs, and to add diversity to the gene pool, it is necessary to sometimes breed back to the standard size Aussies. When this is done I can not guarantee the size of the puppies. Also when breeding to dogs who knowingly produce smaller sizes, you will sometimes get very small puppies who do not reach the minimum 14 inches required to be a "mini" Aussie. These dogs are labeled as "Toys". I do not breed specifically to get toy sized dogs, but they have shown up in the past and will again in the future. They are in every way pure bred, they are not crossed with any other breed of dog. They will be registered and can do everything their siblings can do, they are just smaller.

I compete with my dogs in conformation. The Miniature and Toy Aussies are only recognized by the rare breed association at this time, so that is where we compete. I feel that if you are breeding dogs and not constantly comparing your dogs to other dogs of the same breed in the conformation ring, you will not know if your dogs are up to the current standard of quality or not. To say you do not need to show your dogs to know they are quality is a lazy mans way of saying they don't care what quality they are breeding. Every breeder should be able to have their breeding dogs pointed and even obtain championships if they are in a breeding program. To have dogs that continue to show against others and continue to get beaten means that the quality of your dogs conformation (the way he is put together structurally) is substandard and you should rethink it's place in a breeding program."

I'd welcome any other views on the subject!

Thanks!